So who actually invented the trampoline?

George P. Nissen (February 3, 1914 – April 7, 2010) was an American gymnast and inventor who developed the modern trampoline and made trampolining a worldwide sport and recreation.

During World War II, the trampoline was used to train pilots by getting them used to orienting themselves in the air. After the war, Nissen continued to promote the trampoline and began touring in Europe and later the Soviet Union promoting both the sport of “rebound tumbling” and his trampoline equipment.

Nissen set up a manufacturing plant for his company in England in 1956 headed up by Ted Blake an English trampoline pioneer, first in Hainault then Romford and finally Brentwood Essex by the mid-1960s and manufactured trampolines there for many years.

Brentwood still has a thriving trampolining community but no longer a local factory. But by the late 1970s other manufacturers had started to make similar equipment and eventually, although the word trampoline was originally a trademark, it became a generic word for rebound apparatus. Nissen’s company ceased operations in the 1980s.



By Nissen Trampoline Company (now defunct) – Tim Blake, CC BY 3.0,

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